Checking and reporting HMOs – February 2017

Checking and reporting HMOs (Article 4 wards) – 5 steps

1 If you know that the property became an HMO after 5/4/13, or if there are 7 or more occupants, go straight to step 2. If you don’t know when the use started, check the HMO licence:

Any licence dates prior to April 2013 the house probably does not need planning permission.

2 If the date is around or after 5/4/13 or there are 7 or more occupants, check if planning permission has been granted. Go to the planning applications page:

and search for the address. If there’s a recent application for HMO use which has been approved, the HMO is approved.

3 If there is no planning application (this is most often the case), check if an enforcement notice has been served by looking at the enforcement register.

  • Click Ctrl+F to bring up a search box at the top, and type in the address.

4 If it’s not there or if permission has been refused, and it’s being used right now as an HMO, ie there are 3 or more unrelated people living in the house (as far as you know), make a complaint to Planning Enforcement:

  • Choose “planning enforcement complaint form”. Use the following as the reason for complaint – The house is being used as an HMO and seems to have started this use after 5th April 2013 or has 7 or more occupants.
  • Send the form and wait for the result of the investigation. You should be notified when it’s logged. The whole investigation may take several months.

5 If it’s not being used as an HMO but is being converted to an HMO or advertised as an HMO, use the sample letters to write to the owner and/or the letting agency. Your local Councillor or LAT/Residents’ Association may be able to help with this. As soon as the use starts, follow the steps above to make a complaint to Planning Enforcement.